With the antidote in hand the party healed everyone on their ship from the affliction of “Turned to Deer” and heard an odd sound, they looked overboard and found a small boat with a sleeping dwarf in it. When he woke up pulled out a rusty knife and jokingly threatened to take over the ship. They brought him aboard and fed him while he introduced himself to the party and the other people on the boat. He was a dwarf from the north island that had become separated from his fellow travelers. The lizard folk worked together to set up a wall of fishbones to replace the wall that was missing from the back of the boat where the captain’s quarters used to be, the wall was only a few feet high. They set sail on the trail of Jazina and her pirates and consulted their map again, the bard taking a bit of time to identify the map finding it was not only ancient but elven made and had a secret phrase that would unlock its hidden bounty. He spoke the elvish word for “reveal” and two islands showed up as well as an odd rock formation they would have to pass to get to Jazina and her flag ship, the Drakes Fortune. They sailed through the afternoon and came within sight of the first island, which as they got closer they observed abandoned boats. A few were newer, but most of them looked beaten and worn down by the sea and time. They gave it some distance and as night fell they saw fire in the center of the island and could hear some sort of revel taking place. The night air was filled with the smells of a delicious feast and the sounds of a good time, but the party stayed away from it. During the night they had a few visitors, a greeting was heard from the water and the druid lizard folk saw a small kobold on a boat that was set up like a general store. He offered the party wares for gold and trade. The group was split into two groups, one side wanted to murder him and take everything he had, the other side wanted to trade and would attempt to stop the other group if stupidity overtook them. They traded away their magic speaking golden monkey skulls for a spyglass, the other spyglass was in the captain’s quarters that sank to the deep. They bought some lumber, chains, potions, healers kits, and a potentially cursed yo-yo. He bid them ado and rowed off into the night after telling them the first island had food that was so good you never wanted to leave and the other island had shepherds that would sell you sheep if you had things to trade. The next watch saw a few whales off in the distance coming up for air and the following watch felt something rock their boat. With their torches they noticed a column of green scales that lead to the face of a sea serpent flickering in the light. The serpent asked in a booming voice for Jazina to show herself, which woke the entire boat sending the party scurrying. Diplomacy mixed with selective phrasing was attempted by the bard and monk leading to a quick and to the point discussion. The swashbuckler tried to hide his Jazina hats he had taken as spoils of battle. He looked into the water and saw another serpent head rising up. The heads both started sniffing the boat and eventually found the hats. The party found out the beast was an enemy of the creature that Jazina employed to destroy her enemies, the dreaded kraken. The party informed it where her ship was and they were not her friends. It left them a scale to throw into the water when they were close to her ship to bring him into the fray. Left confused, the party went back to sleep and finished off their watches. In the morning they sailed further past the second island, a hilly rock with herds of sheep milling about. They decided again to stay off and away from the island for fear of another deer incident. After a few more hours of sailing and some minor reef navigation they drew close to an odd bit of water full of broken ships, floating bodies, and in the distance large columns of stone jutting up from the ocean known as the Titan’s Ribcage. With their spyglass the ranger and blood hunter noticed odd forms flying around the ribs, recognizing them as more stitched together dragon creatures and they were eating something. With their combined effort in the crow’s nest and the centaur navigator they started making for the ribs, knowing from their map there was only one safe way through without wrecking the ship and ending up like the rest of the flotsam. As they started their progress they were almost caught off guard by one of the dragon creatures dive booming the deck. The bard knocked it out of the sky and into the water with a spell of laughter and it was struck by the boat as it continued moving forward. The centaur tied off the wheel and started her charge toward the front of the ship where all the action was taking place, the quickling guarding the wheel from danger if need be. The other two dragons hovered above the deck and blasted people with their chilling breath, the party all rushing up to deal with their foes. the minotaur had been ordered to attack anything they could with the ballista on the sides of the ship but were unable to bring anything to bear quick enough to deal with the dragons, some drawing smaller crossbows to shoot at the winged threats. The new dwarf friend called down a few pillars of radiant light to vex the scaled beasts and the monk was quick to land quite a few punishing blows against it, knocking it prone again. The first dragon eventually fell to the centaurs assault as well as electrical vengeance. The second dragon realized people were shooting at it and attacked the crow’s nest mercilessly with both chilling breath and tooth and nail. The blood hunter fell first, just to the floor of the crow’s nest and not out of it. The cleric threw a small ranged healing spell to him, hoping to keep him around for a bit longer. The ranger stabbed at the beast also taking a few hits too and eventually fled, almost succumbing to the pain. The third dragon had gone after the minotaur manning the ballista and was quickly punched in the back by repeat attacks of the monk and the dwarf cleric. The centaur had a few good hits as well and the beast fell. The monk, seeing his friends in the crow’s nest were in trouble, ran up to help them. The bard threw around a few spells to harry the minds of the dragons and enabled his allies to last longer in the combat as well as limited mobility bonuses, the druid threw fire at the dragons, attempting to burn them away, and while it was difficult to throw the flame the ship did not catch fire. The minotaur attempted to detach a few of the ballista to shoot at the dragons on deck and missed terribly. The swashbuckler had little luck with his bow. The crow’s nest was a mess, the ranger had fled and the blood hunter climbed away from the beast while it was preoccupied with the fleeing ranger, eventually the monk was able to bludgeon the life out of the dragon and it fell to the deck in a heap of broken bone and gristle. The party gathered their wits and continued piloting their ship before it continued its crash course with the ribs and were able to safely make their way within sight of the Drake’s Fortune, stationary on the sea on the horizon. The party has now made it to 5th level.
Wednesday, July 18, 2018
With the ship still afloat, the group decided to multitask, one group went after whatever was left in the captain’s quarters and the other went below deck to find any remaining opposition on board. The crow ranger, the lizard swashbuckler, and the lizard druid entered Jazina’s cabin finding a book on the desk, a four-corner bed, and a few chairs. The book was disturbed by the swashbuckler, causing the entire cabin to slide off the ship, bars fell and locked into place on the windows, and the bed turned to stone causing the entire room to start sinking into the ocean. They first attempted the door, which sent an electric shock through them from the doorknob. The ranger slapped the book back on the desk, causing it to flip open and reveal the explosive runes charm. They took damage from the inferno and most of the room that was not submerged in water was now on fire. The druid used thunder wave to blow a hole in the ceiling and push the ranger through, but he got stuck. She tried to push him but accidentally was a bit frisky. The swashbuckler was able to get him free and push him out into the open ocean. They were able to swim up to the surface, realizing they had sunk almost ninety feet in less than a minute. They watched in the darkness as the room hit something serpentine and continue sinking. They joined the rest of their group on the ship. Meanwhile the paladin and the barbarian found and freed the minotaur below deck and found two other adventurers, a human wizard and a cat folk druid, as well as a strange mythical beast known as a Kirin. As soon as they opened the Kirin’s cell it flew off and the paladin swung a few points of healing on it as it passed him. They also found two ogres sleeping in the crew cabins, the paladin grabbed the pirate queens head, tossed it in their room and told them their master was dead, they could either join the crew proper or sink in the ocean. He gave them a few moments alone in their room and they came out to call him captain. The group all took jobs on the ship, the paladin acting as captain, the swashbuckler acting as first mate, the centaur as navigator, and everyone else looked into the food shortage issue having over fifty mouths to feed and bodies to get healthy. A few of the party took to fishing or assisting the ones fishing with magic, they were able to catch many odd fish and found out one of their new ogre friends was the ship's cook. They went with him to the kitchen and found it not up to ship standards, full of garbage, and the bones of many fish strewn about. They helped him clean it out and start over. The minotaur were all malnourished and exhausted from their time as gnoll prisoners and needed proper rest. The party checked out the map on board and realized it was a magic map showing them the entire sea as well as tiny boats to indicate where they were. They noticed the Drake’s Fortune was a about a day ahead of them and found two more islands that would have food to restock their larder, one labeled “fruits” and the other “meats”. The party made speed to the fruits island and found it, observing the island to only be a few miles wide with a large mountain surrounded by dense fruit bearing trees. The rangers and the blood hunter used their heightened senses to scan the island for other life and only found a few monsters lived on top of the mountain. The party used their away boats to ferry to gather the fruit, a few of the party and the ogre taste testing the product they were taking. They noticed the apple banana hybrid fruit to be overly delicious almost to the point of instant addiction, high in sugar and flavor, the wizard noticed all of it radiated mild transmutation magic. Seeing nothing instantaneous they figured it was good eating, even the tree sap was delicious, the centaur had one of the ogres try it and he tried to throw one of the trees to the ship so they could bring it with. The druids and paladin decided they needed to take saplings with them and returned to the boat. They decided to stay within eyesight of the island overnight and sail out in the morning, the first watch noticed a chilling green light on the island and when they went to wake the next watch both the paladin and the barbarian, the two that had tried the fruit had turned into deer. They switched out the watch and experimented with the fruit a bit finding no way to change them back. In the morning they realized they had never stopped the crew from continuing eating the fruit, and they also were all turned into deer, even Kiel and their quickling friend, who became a small cat sized deer. Realizing they had no real choice, they made their way back to the island and went to where they sensed the monsters the day before. They found a large ruined city and a temple built into the mountain. Inside the temple they found ancient broken traps and proceeded to break into every room and disturbing everything within, first finding spider webs and a room of spoiled goods, double doors with eyes painted on them, a broken dart trap that just blew whiffs of air, and a large spider and its three corpses it had been feeding on. The party was hesitant to open the double doors and had split into three smaller groups to deal with whatever the temple had left to throw at them. The spider was easy pickings for the party, it missed the druid with an attack and fell victim to fire and hoof attacks, leading into a hall with a gelatinous cube. The other small group found a skeletal man with green eyes sitting on a heavy chair in an empty room, he spoke in a strange tongue the bird and blood hunter did not recognize. The bird shot him twice, the skeleton spoke strange words and the bird disappeared in a flash of green smoke. The blood hunter continued to launch arrows into the skeleton until it tried to summon a larger spell to take out these invaders, bringing forth a shifting blue cube of elemental energy. The blood hunter weighed his options and shot the cube, causing the creature to drop it, causing a ten-foot radius sphere of nothingness to disintegrate part of the room as well as the creature. Those who spoke the human tongue heard it say “Oh shit” before a tearing sound ripped it from this world. Many members of the group gathered around to see what the commotion was on this side, leaving the paladin and the catfolk druid with the gelatinous cube, which was able to get off a few hits on the paladin while he and the cat both fled in opposite directions. At this point the bird fell to the ground in the main chamber with two odd women, one had a normal looking upper body but her legs were the body of a lion, the other had the lower body of a serpent. They welcomed the bird, asking them to help them drive out the invaders using magic to persuade him. The catfolk druid was investigating the murals and mosaics trying to figure out what this place was and from studying the wall art gleaned a bit of history. These creatures that lived here were like gods, they were worshiped by lesser things. They tried to gain more power by summoning a demon or devil, and it killed their gods and destroyed their cities, now only two of these creatures remain. She was also able to glean the order of cisterns to fix her friends. Most of the party was investigating a trio of cisterns and an arrow just missed the wizard, he turned to see the bird shooting at him, a strange snake lady try to charm him, and a lion woman charge him. Chaos ensued as the group tried to deal with these creatures. The paladin, having just gained some distance from the cube saw the bird shooting at his friends and started dancing, compelling the bird and the snake woman to start dancing as well. The party pummeled the Lamia, and realizing they were outmatched the lamia pled for mercy, promising treasure and a cure for the deer. The party took their word, spared them and gained the cure to save themselves and their crew. They returned to the ship with even more fruit, the antidote acted as a vaccine against the magic of the fruit, something the lamia had used to punish those that would steal from them without leaving tribute. They also admitted to selling deer to traveling merchants.
On July eleventh, our session had an abnormally large turn out for players. We had a three of the regular players unable to make it and had four new players start. We were joined by a human life cleric, a human wizard, a cat folk drunken master monk, and a half elf eldritch knight fighter. Having prepared more of their sea voyage I had to change up my plans, pitting this army of twelve heroes against a force of invading ogres and hill giants. The giant kin were trying to attack Godmoot, the home of many of the players and the encounter went better than expected, each player getting moments to shine while combating the small attack force of giant kin. There was also a Nothic, an eye attack-based creature that ran on all fours and creeped everyone out, it was able to sneak up on the party members that were hiding out in the rear of the battlefield. It was a good two and a half hours of combat but it worked well, the monk catfolk stealing kills, the wizard crippling an ogre and freezing another. The paladin and our new cleric were able to magically bless a few of the new members as well, adding to their chances of success. Combinations of good crowd control from the bard and many arrows from the blood hunter and crow ranger helped whittle down their oversized foes. The cat folk ranger critically wounded one of the giants as it was fleeing the bard when the whole group got to attack it for free and the druid lizard was able to use her flame scimitar to great dismay of the ogres. Ray of sickness seemed to be a fun punishment against the ogres as well.
Sunday, July 8, 2018
Tuesday, July 3, 2018
The adventure picked up with the party trying to figure out where to go next. They found out the gold monkey skull they found last time was a communication device and were unsure how or if they should use it or not. After much discussion they chose to leave the blood-stained pirate vessel with a broken mast and after much more discussion take the smaller boat known as the Tarrasque Shell. Before heading out a few bought potions and Ki-el bought a necklace that gave him a common language. The two characters with a sailing background, our lizard rogue and centaur barbarian, took up charge and navigated the party off in the indicated direction of the stolen minotaur. About an hour into their journey the cat folk monk on watch noticed a small vessel in their way that would be sunk unless they took evasive actions. The two sailors could not make a decision quick enough the smaller boat was crushed underneath. They heard a cry for help and the lizard rogue left overboard to save a small fey man known as a quickling. He told them he was running from a few past debts and just happened to be in their way. The party was hard pressed to trust him until it was let slip that Jazina had been defeated and he seemed visibly relieved, he was in greatest debt to her and now only had to worry about a northern human man that sought his coin. The group continued sailing and at nightfall they took turns watching the seas for trouble. As the raven ranger and the lizard druid watched there were odd blue lights floating towards their boat. The black sail came into focus as well as the bleached white bone deck, the pirate garbed skeleton waved hello from the deck of the odd vessel. They woke the rest of the party from their slumber and pointed out the strange sight before them. The skeleton pirate engaged the party in conversation for a bit until his fellow undead had climbed up the opposite side of the party’s boat and started attacking. The team got to see their new quickling friend in action, tossing a silver stringed dagger at his foes and pulling it back to his hand. The skeleton pirate captain threw magic at the party, shattering the crow’s nest, but was put down when the centaur, monk, and bard jumped across the gap between ships and pummeled him. In their moment of victory, the party questioned what to do with a pirate ship as it disincorporated and they fell into the water. The rest of the party dealt with the remaining skeletons quickly. The rest of the night went uneventfully except a dolphin jumping over their boat. The next morning the party continued sailing finding a small island only sixty feet long bearing only a solitary palm tree and sand. The party left Ki-el aboard and investigated, finding something had been buried and dug up a dead elf who unfortunately had suffocated in a wooden casket buried in the sand, and the borrowing crab like monsters in his stomach. The crab monsters climbed out and were annihilated by the party. They verified with Ki-el that it was an elf they found and buried it back on the island, setting sail after a few more investigations. Later in the afternoon they caught black sails on the horizon, finally finding the Kraken’s Maw, one of the other pirate ships with their minotaur friends. They waited till nightfall and attempted to sneak their ship within striking range. They sent their quickling friend into the ship ahead of them to see what havoc he could cause. A few minutes later they heard loud noises and a few yells and took that moment to shoot out the watcher in the crow’s nest. The rest of the party attempted to board the ship, finding the jump and climb difficult and three gnolls were readying the pair of ballista. The monk killed one of the gnolls and disabled the device with its body. The pirate leader, again a tiefling with light blue skin and swirling tattoos that looked just like Jazina. Jazina approached the party and use a spell to create a wave of thunder that struck four of the group, only one was blasted off the ship, landing on their own boat. The Lizard rogue decided to pull the boat around to come along side the bigger ship. In his attempt he misjudged the distance, turning ability, and the way a boat works and jammed his ship nose down under the larger ship somehow, starting the process of sinking his own ship. He and the rest of his crew were able to make their way onto the larger ship safely. The group was able to again overpower this Jazina figure and her minions on top of the ship, the Bloodhunter sinking an arrow into eye socket and the ranger making short work of the last remaining gnoll.